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Ojito by starlight September 25, 2009

Posted by tracybarnett in Adventure, Nature tourism, New Mexico.
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ABQ Ojitos Jemez082

One of my very favorite partners in adventure is my sister Tami. Like me, she tends to live just a tiny bit on the edge of what other people see as possible. She wants to do it all, and so every day ends up being an adventure.

Like the night we tried to do too much, ran late and ended up wandering lost in the Ojito Wilderness by starlight.

Not to worry, she assured me. It doesn’t matter that we’ve lost the trail. We can just follow profile of that mesa. We’ll end up there eventually.

We were looking for the hoodoos, those peculiar rock formations that loom like giant goblins over the landscape. She had been hiking in to this spot once a month to study the night sky for her shamanic astrology practice, and this time she was including me. It was a magical place, sacred to the Zia Pueblo, and I was thrilled.

Nonetheless, the thrill was wearing off a bit as I, jetlagged and sleep deprived, stumbled against a cactus and grabbed for the duffel bag that kept sliding off my shoulder.

“Wait, there’s not supposed to be a dropoff here,” I heard in the distance.

Not reassuring.

Things worked out, as they always do with Tami. We didn’t find the hoodoos that night but we stumbled across something almost as nice, given the hour: a cleared-off campsite with a fire ring and a clear view of the horizon. We spread our tarp and our bags and laid back to wonder at the constellations.

Really, we had just been trying too hard, I thought to myself. It’s all right here.

The fiery edges of the sky woke me before dawn and I grabbed my camera to capture it. We made our way to the hoodoos and caught them in the gold-red light of early morning.

Finally I turned my camera on the most beautiful sight of all: my sweet sister perched on the overlook, contemplating the wonder of it all.

Tami sunrise

A little tour of the magnificent Ojito Wilderness, just after the monsoon rains. Enjoy.